Published: Wednesday, January 18, 2006
Woman decides to drop appeal over lottery tax
The city changed its tax law, effective in 2003, to tax Ohio Lottery winnings.
By ED RUNYAN
VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF
WARREN A woman who thought she didn't owe city income tax on lottery money she and her ex-husband received has given up her appeals court case.
Tina Marie Rodepouch, of Parkman Road Southwest, had filed an appeal with the 11th District Court of Appeals challenging a Warren Municipal Court decision Sept. 20, 2005, saying she had to pay city taxes on the money.
But she has dropped that case and will continue to pay the taxes, said Gregory V. Hicks, Warren's law director.
"She didn't want to spend any more money fighting it," Hicks said of Rodepouch.
According to court documents, Steve Rodepouch won a yearly prize payout in 1987 from the Ohio Lottery for life with the stipulation that a minimum amount was guaranteed.
In 2001, his marriage to Tina Marie Rodepouch was dissolved, and the two agreed to split the $52,000 annual amount evenly.
In 1987 when the Rodepouchs won the lottery, the city of Warren did not tax lottery winnings, Hicks said.
But in 2002, the city's tax ordinance was changed so that effective Jan. 1, 2003, all proceeds from the Ohio Lottery and other types of wagering received by residents of the city would be taxable by the city, documents in the case state.
Hicks said Tina Marie Rodepouch has been paying the 2 percent taxes on her part of the lottery winnings since 2003 despite challenging the city's ordinance.
In August 2005, Magistrate Dan Gerin ruled that Tina Rodepouch owed the taxes despite her argument that the money was hers only because of the dissolution of her marriage, which was a property settlement not taxable by the city.
The state and federal governments also take taxes from lottery winnings, Gerin noted in his ruling.